Review: Narco Terror (PS3)

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Title: Narco Terror
Format: PlayStation Network Download (1.2 GB)
Release Date: July 30, 2013
Publisher: Deep Silver
Developer: Keen Software House Ltd. & Rubicon Organization
Original MSRP: $9.99 (US), €9.99 (EU), £7.99 (UK)
ESRB Rating: M
PEGI: 16
Narco Terror is also available on Xbox Live Arcade and PC.
The PlayStation Network Download version was used for this review.

According to the publisher it’s an exhilarating blast to the 80s, dishing out justice, one grenade at a time! Narco Terror combines the good of the old and the amazing of the new in an action-packed twin-stick shooter about an over-the-top one-man war against a drug cartel.  In true arcade style, it is filled with unlimited ammo, ear-splitting  grenades, huge explosions, massive tanks, armed helicopters and fast planes. 1-2 players drop in/out, local and online.

Gameplay:
You start off this twin stick shooter with a story that is forgettable and cheesy. This game doesn’t care anyway, it just wants you to kill thousands of the same bad guys over and over again. You’re allowed you to upgrade your weapons but still feel like you’re ever so slightly underpowered for the incessant waves of enemies.  Don’t get me wrong, the shotgun is great but it lacks the range you’ll need so much, whereas the mini-gun is powerful and has the range but overheats frequently. I spent most of my time running away whilst it cooled down.

For this style of game the camera moves about a lot more than I expected, which is good mostly but when you’re trying to aim at an enemy stood on a higher platform and it can often mean more trial and error than skill.

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Difficulty in this game is frustrating as it often auto saves during a wave of enemies which get the upper hand and wipe out your health bar quickly which means game over. Thankfully you have an infinite amount of continues but it puts you back right in the middle of the same enemies that killed you, with the same gun, same health, same everything in fact. This meant I got caught in a groundhog day effect, living out the same part over and over until I just managed to survive or eventually realised the difficulty doesn’t change with another player and they can revive you if you get killed, albeit with half health.

So to get past several annoying parts of the game you might want to get a friend, homeless person or even a trained monkey round to help you. But would this new found ‘player two’ want to stick around to the final boss? It depends on two things, if you put on some kind of a spread or snacks and if they don’t mind monotony. It tries to break up the boredom with some mini games which end up being even worse than the endless wave after wave of identical enemies in a surprisingly long game.

It has got some good moments and it can be quite fun causing a massive explosion killing a load of bad guys in one go. When I first used the hellfire missiles and turret, I felt like a badass and began to forgive the game for some its shortcomings, and then I got in a boat which moves in ways that defy the laws of physics and has me shooting enemies that seem oblivious to me being there and I’m disappointed again.

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Visuals:
When I think of the visuals I’m somewhat torn, admittedly not as much as the screen during the game, but whether or not these graphics are good. When playing the game, as mentioned, there is a fair amount of screen tearing, but surprisingly that isn’t what bothers me, it’s when the camera zooms in or shows a cut scene that I feel like it’s a very good looking PlayStation one game. It’s quite jarring when it happens and I don’t like it. Characters in the game weren’t meant to be seen up close, yet it happens frequently. Then there is the 80s looking text and HUD which looks out of place in this game and isn’t good to look at.

If I don’t consider the PSOne style characters running around, the game itself isn’t that bad. The scenery is excellent, with good looking water effects and lighting. Most of the props and areas get reused quite a bit but not to the point of being an irritation.

Audio:
Some of the cheesiest dialogue I’ve heard in years. Almost everything said has swearing in it and gets tedious. Okay, I’m being mean, I know. Truthfully along with the graphics overall the audio is good, explosions and gunfire sound decent. I even enjoyed the music to a degree.

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Online/Multiplayer:
You can team up with one other player with drop in and out cooperative play, both on and offline. This can be a blessing as mentioned above, but if you are in a single player game, you can only get on the couch drop-ins and not online requests. For that you have to go into the multiplayer menu and find or create a match, but after spending twenty minutes on several occasions waiting for someone to join I lost interest in trying that mode.

Conclusion:
This could have easily been such a good game, I bet anyone who plays it can see that it has potential but never delivers. I would have liked this game to be shorter and have a bit more variety with weapons and bad guys. I wanted to upgrade my weapons to feel like an unstoppable killing machine annihilating everything in my path, but it ended up feeling like an underpowered chore just to get to the end. I know that I’ve barely mentioned the good parts of this game, there are some, honest. It’s not broken by any means and if you think I’m being too picky, then give it a go, just expect an average game and you won’t be disappointed.

Score:
6.5

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  • YoyoMcDingdong

    I think maybe Dead Nation(if ya have’nt already played it) might be a better option if your looking for an top down twin stick shooter,which I believe is coming to the Vita at some point in the future.

    • ChazzH69

      I agree, Dead Nation is fun and addictive, and yes it’s coming to the Vita, partly because of the PS Nation community asking for it to happen.